Reginald L. Goodwin's Posts (2371)

I Can't Take Credit for the Title...

I detect a hint of frustration in detecting the Higgs Boson. Once called the "God Particle" by Leon Lederman, he's "using the Lord's name in vain" expressing his frustration on the amount of money being (and been) spent trying to find the theoretical particle that if discovered, will change the fundamental understanding of physics and the universe (especially String Theory), which a professor friend at UT Austin compared to: (ahem) bull excrement!

 

Basically, the Higgs Boson is supposed to posit why anything in the universe has mass (photons for example, have a rest mass of m0 = 0, as in zip, nada).

Read more…

Strong Force...

Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson: when you see the PDF of the first chapter of a very short, remarkable book, you'll peek into a remarkable life. She was the first African American graduate of MIT, and is the president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y. There are always "firsts": make sure you reach back so that it's not "only."

 

"The Graduate" Source: Mo'Kelly Report (Ernie Barnes, R.I.P.)
Read more…

Myth Busted...

We all give ourselves time limits: there is "a time and a purpose under Heaven" according to Ecclesiastes (a pen name of Solomon). This examines the myth that anyoneed having not made a "discovery" before age thirty cannot possibly look forward to winning a Nobel Prize - science in particular, or literature especially. The article I post simply states it's not true, e.g., Octavia Butler started at 23; Issac Asimov at 38.

Read more…

Missed the Chat...

This is an embed of the chat concerning the Large Haydron Collider and its search for the so far elusive Higgs Boson. It will explain why mass has "mass." Mass/Stuff is a drag on the ability to on anything other than a photon (rest mass = 0) to go at the speed of light. This also lends itself to String Theory and other dimensions, so enjoy the information. Use it in your writing.

Read more…

The Power of Pencils and Stubborness...

Einstein answering a question regarding his acumen at science, said God had allowed him born "as stubborn as a mule." The video from Ainissa Ramirez shows people of color exceling in the sciences - sister is a prof at Yale in Material Science!

 

The dilemma is the expected instantaneousness of any posed question. Google has sadly hindered our patience in problem-solving or storytelling. A student is more prone to say: "So...what's the answer?" versus "what's the next step?"

 

The quality of the question and the stubborness of the seeker determines the height of the outcome.

 

 

Read more…

2D Superconducting...Islands...

2D Superconducting...Islands: I feature this because I had the privilege to meet Dr. Nadya Mason at the joint conference of the National Society of Black Physicists and National Society of Hispanic Physicists in Austin, Texas this September. Her work in nanoscale devices is Nobel Prize material. It's interesting to note: blacks have won 13 Nobel Peace Prizes, and one Nobel Prize in Literature (Toni Morrison). NONE in the hard sciences.

 

Dr. Mason has my enthusiastic backing, and her own considerable acumen...keep up with her name!

Read more…

2nd Planet on the Right, Straight on Til Morning: well, we know it's "2nd star on the right..." (etc., etc.). It was fun to see SyFy take a classic tale like this and give some plausability to the "magic" of essentially travel through a wormhole. After all, Arthur C. Clark said:

 

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."

Read more…

"Ode to Science"...

Ode to Science and vicariously, science fiction, largely inspired by science.

 

In the Zeitgeist, there seems to be a disdain for expertise, intelligence, assigning such to "elitism," or in the words of Senator Jim Demint of South Carolina (in clear, political dog whistle fashion): "uppity."

 

They probably would have HATED Octavia Butler's "Parable of the Talents" had they read it:

 

Realize: she wrote this before the millennium, before the moment of now...may she rest in peace. I feel poetry as well as fiction when it is insightful, almost prophetic, to the human condition...TGP

 

Parable of the Talents, Octavia Butler © 1998, pages 7 – 8 paperback:

 

FROM Memories of Other Worlds

BY TAYLOR FRANKLIN BANKOLE

 I have read that the period of upheaval that journalists have begun to refer to as “The Apocalypse” or more commonly, more bitterly “the Pox” lasted from 2015 through 2030—a decade and a half of chaos. This is untrue. The Pox has been a much longer torment. It began well before 2015, perhaps even before the turn of the millennium. It has not ended.

      I have also read that the Pox was caused by accidentally coinciding climatic, economic, and sociological crises. It would be more honest to say that the Pox was caused by our own refusal to deal with obvious problems in those areas. We caused the problems: then we sat and watched as they grew into crises. I have heard people deny this, but I was born in 1970. I have seen enough to know that it is true. I have watched education become more a privilege of the rich than the basic necessity that it must be if civilized society is to survive. I have watched as convenience, profit, and inertia excused greater and more dangerous environmental degradation. I have watched poverty, hunger, and disease become inevitable for more and more people.

      Overall, the Pox has had the effect of an installment-plan World War III. In fact, there were several small, bloody shooting wars going on around the world during the Pox. These were stupid affairs—wastes of life and treasure. They were fought, ostensibly, to defend against vicious foreign enemies. All too often, they were actually fought because inadequate leaders did not know what else to do. Such leaders knew that they could depend on fear, suspicion, hatred, need, and greed to arouse patriotic support for war.

      Amid all this, somehow, the United States of America suffered a major nonmilitary defeat. It lost no important war, yet it did not survive the Pox. Perhaps it simply lost sight of what it once intended to be, then blundered aimlessly until it exhausted itself.

      What is left of it now, what it has become, I do not know.

Read more…